THORNBURY lost ground at the top with a three-wicket home defeat against Goatacre in Premier Two Glos/Wilts, writes Harry Watts.

On another gorgeous day at the Ship, Luke Davis won the toss and elected to bat first on a good pitch.

Dan Davis and Dan Lezar opened the batting for Thornbury and the pair put on yet another 50 partnership, before Davis fell LBW to change bowler Langley for 31, Thornbury 52-1 after 11 overs. Marc Lezar joined younger brother Dan in the middle and the run-rate started to dry up with Langley and Wilkins doing a great job in restricting the Thornbury batsman to singles. Eventually Dan Lezar (34) was caught at long-on looking to relieve some pressure and Marc (32) cut straight to point to leave Thornbury on 112-3 after 28 overs. Luke Davis came in at four but he soon departed LBW to Wilkins for 7, leaving it up to Nick Willis-Stovold and Yvan Grant to salvage the innings. At 117-4 in the 30th over, Yvan adopted a slightly more cautious approach than normal, while Stovold looked to run hard and put some pressure back on Goatacre.

Thornbury were 162-4 after 40 overs and after that, the shackles were off for Grant, who regularly took 10 runs from each over. However, he was caught at backward point, looking for one big shot too many for 68 (56), which sparked a mass collapse at 217-5 in the 46th over. Five further wickets fell within the space of 20 balls and just 14 runs as Thornbury stumbles to 231 all-out from 49.2 overs - probably 40 runs short.

Luke Davis and Yvan Grant opened the bowling for Thornbury and after Dan Davis replaces Grant, the Davis brother had Haines and Breet looking troubled at times, without significant reward. It would be Dan Davis who made the first breakthrough however, trapping Breet LBW for 29 - 81-1 after 16 overs. Dan Lezar was bowling very well at the other end and bowled Ed Wilkins for 0 and had Haines caught behind for 54, which gave Thornbury some much-needed momentum.

Goatacre continued continued to build useful partnerships, but Thornbury continued to take wickets, with Luke Davis bowling Horton for 35 and Twine (47) was caught by Marc Lezar to give Davis another - Goatacre 194-5 after 42 overs. Small contributions meant that Goatacre were still favourites, even after Andy Weeks claimed the scales of Dawson and Jonathan Wilkins, which left Goatacre 222-7 after 47 overs. Goatacre needed just 10 more runs, which they got with two overs to spare, as they reached 232-7, a three-wicket defeat for Thornbury.